Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Review: The Golden Lily (Bloodlines #2) by Richelle Mead

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. Alchemists protect vampire secrets - and human lives.

Sydney would love to go to college, but instead, she's been sent into hiding at a posh boarding school in Palm Springs, California - tasked with protecting Moroi princess Jill Dragomir from assassins who want to throw the Moroi court into civil war. Formorly in disgrace, Sydney is now praised for her loyalty and obedience, and held up as the model of an exemplary Alchemist.
But the closer she grows to Jill, Eddie, and especially Adrian, the more she finds herself questioning her age-old Alchemist beliefs, her idea of family, and her sense of what it means to truly belong. Her world becomes even more complicated when magical experiments show Sydney may hold the key to prevent becoming Strigoi - the fiercest vampires, the ones who don't die. But it's her fear of being just that - special, magical, powerful - that scares her more than anything. Equally daunting is her new romance with Braydon, a cute, brainy guy who seems to be her match in every way. Yet, as perfect as he seems, Sydney finds herself being drawn to someone else - someone forbidden to her.
When a shocking secret threatens to tear the vampire world apart, Sydney's loyalties are suddenly tested more than ever before. She wonders how she's supposed to strike a balance between the principles and dogmas she's been taught, and what her instincts are now telling her.
Should she trust the Alchemists - or her heart? 

5 of 5 stars

The fact that I am writing this review right now is a miracle.  Why you ask? Simple, I would rather be reading the next book in the series, The Indigo Spell!  However, I have forced myself to review this one before I read the next one or it just won't happen.  

We return to Palm Springs and Amberwood in the second installment of Bloodlines.  And the more I read in the series, the more I love it.  I was so convinced that I would never enjoy Bloodlines like I enjoyed Vampire Academy, but I was so wrong!  

Sydney Sage is again the main character and POV we read in TGL.  I really love Sydney and enjoy her comments and thoughts.  However, to be so clever and smart, she can really be dumb too.  She has all the book knowledge in the world but the simplest things can throw her for a loop.  I suppose that is why she is so endearing.  It is obvious that Sydney is struggling with morals in this book.  As an alchemist she is supposed to despise Dhapmirs and Moroi, however, at times she notices they are more ethical and moral than some humans.  The dilemma only becomes worse the more time she spends with Eddie, Jill, Dimitri, Sonya, Angeline and Adrian.  

Speaking of Adrian, I am so proud of the strides he is making in this series.  Despite the fact that he has a history of being rebellious and insensitive, he wants to grow and become a better person.  We saw him "attempt" this in VA to try and win Rose, but Rose was always meant to be with Dimitri.  This time is different as he has a hard time even explaining it to himself.  

The other issues in the book surround Sydney and her issues with magic.  If you recall, her teacher is a witch and believes that Sydney could become a powerful one as well, if she would only embrace it.  After Sonya and Sydney are attacked the struggle to resist magic and claim it is evil is much more difficult.  Events in this book also lead Sydney to think about the ethics of an offshoot of the Alchemists and if they are hiding things from her as well.  Clearly, her struggle with right and wrong will continue in book 3.  

In conclusion, be prepared for a heck of an ending that we have all been waiting for a long time.  It was totally worth the wait!  And since the remainder of the series is already released, I don't have to wait any longer to dig into The Indigo Spell!

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